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Upstate New York Trip: The Ultimate End of Summer Getaway, Dirty 30 Edition

Sign spotted in Fort Ann, NY. Naturally Pete was right on this. This was pretty much a theme for the trip.


To celebrate, I took him on a 6 day long, ultimate upstate New York road trip. I wanted to go to all new towns, be out in nature, and most importantly, RELAX. I'm not a travel blogger, so bear with me, but I think I created a pretty epic Birthday Bash!

On the day of his actual birthday (August 9th), I gave him a map with clues as to where we were going (those are private and some are SENSUAL IN NATURE SO NO YOU CAN'T READ IT). We hit 3 major areas:

1. Sarasota Springs

2. Lake George

3. Woodstock

I honestly didn't want to leave. If you're in NYC and planning to drive/rent a car, you should check out my majestic findings:

Day 1-2: Sarasota Springs:

On our way to our BNB, we went to see Howe's Caverns. You down down hundreds of feet into an underground cave, and GET TO TAKE A BOAT RIDE. It's epic. No one is paying me to say anything on any of these points. BUT WOW. Also, it was cold. Bring a sweater.

Photo by me, in a cave.

We stayed out in a little town in an Amish area near the caves called Fort Plain (near Canajoharie), and drove up to Sarasota Springs the next day. Did you know that there's mineral springs all around the town that you can go up to and drink right from the spout? Pete is obsessed with seltzer, and this is the OG Seltz, so I thought it was time to check out mother nature's bubbles. Honestly, Perrier ended up being better (and not smelling like weird minerals), but hey, it was cool, and free.

One of the fountains in downtown Saratoga Springs. You can go right up and drink.

After spending the afternoon walking around, we went to get massages at the super fancy Putnam Spa. They let you soak in the mineral water for as long as you want before you get a massage (I didn't book the right package evidently, so we didn't end up getting to try that , boo).

Later, with our relaxed muscles and massage oil covered bods, we went out to happy hour and stopped along the road on the way back for some country chow (and light beer, of course). Then it was board games, and lights out for our next adventure.

Day 3-4: Lake George

The first day, we drove up to the area, stopped for lunch and then headed right out for a hike. We went up to the waterfall, and promptly saw a man bathing, and drinking the water straight from the river (and also beer, naturally). Apparently you can just stick your face in Lake George and like, swallow (that's what someone said, surely).

This is just my Iphone photo. No filter OR NUTTIN.

Now, NONE of the photos of this area online do it justice. This is a HUGE and gorgeous lake in upstate New York (yes, it's far up, close to Vermont) that's surrounded by mountains. It was hard to capture how beautiful it was on my phone, but while we were out in the kayaks, the views were MAGICAL. I can't recommend this enough. I was so scared to try kayaking for the first time (why I'm not sure now), but once I got out I was obsessed. I'm already planning my next several kayak trips after my "brave" voyage into awesomeness. I'm ready to become, a "Lake Person."

After a long second day of kayaking, we went to the Adirondack winery to try and then buy some local wines. We snuggled into the cute little house we were staying, had a glass of wine, and watched Alone, one of my new favorite shows on Amazon. It's a survival show, so naturally I enjoy watching it while drinking wine and eating multiple kinds of cheese.

Then, it was off to dinner at one of the lakeside restaurants (yes they do have Uber upstate, but it often takes 20 minutes to get to you, and people like to talk a lot more, which may be a pro or a con, depending on how bat shit crazy you are) and then bar hopping.

First we went to a bar where we were immediately named the "best dressed" at the bar, as Pete was wearing a button down, and I was wearing a giant stretchy shirt-I-mean-dress. We caught a local band playing some covers, as well as a drunk man yelling about cocaine, and saw many people who looked as though they'd be very comfortable on the back of a Harley Davidson.

Next, we wanted to catch a different vibe. We went to the only "NIGHTCLUB" we could find, which ended up being an excellent time filled with shots of tequila and twerking on one another. We heard early 2000's hits, and saw several people attempt, and also succeed at doing the worm.

One of the only pretty images of Lake George I found on google. So beautiful. Photographer not credited. I do not own rights to this photo.

They have giant $1 coffees at Cumberland gas stations upstate :)

Day 5-6: Woodstock

Who knew the music festival is never ending in this super cute town? I purposely picked our last town based on proximity to the city, but had I known how cute it was, I would've picked it based on that! There's adorable shops and restaurants, the whole place is surrounded by mountains (we stayed on Lookout Mountain), and the music culture is alive and well.

We were hungover (naturally) from clubbing our first night, so all we managed to accomplish was to go and pick up some kale (and hot dogs) and grilled our dinner over the fire pit. Then it was sleep time.

Our last day, we couldn't wait to explore. We slept in, went out for coffee and then lunch (be prepared to wait for slow service up here) and then spent the afternoon in the pool. After a bit of relaxation, we got dressed and decided to go out for a cocktail, and one last nice dinner before we drove back home the next day.

We happened to come across a bar that was having an open mic night, so we decided to check it out (and bring in a board game in case it was terrible). Much to our surprise (and probably not the surprise of people from Woodstock), the acts were all pretty great! Pete's favorite was a British dude who sang about sailers (shocking), and mine was myself winning at the board game that I mentioned previously (naturally).

All in all, the trip was a huge success, and I couldn't pick just one favorite area to talk about here. I hope that if you're looking to plan a similar road trip in the area, this helps! XOXO.

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